The Royal Stuarts: A History of the Family That Shaped Britain

The Royal Stuarts A History of the Family That Shaped Britain CompellingA masterly featA magnificent sweeping authoritative warm yet wry history The Wall Street JournalIn this fascinating and intimate portrait of the Stuarts author Allan Massie takes us deep

  • Title: The Royal Stuarts: A History of the Family That Shaped Britain
  • Author: Allan Massie
  • ISBN: 9780312581756
  • Page: 192
  • Format: Hardcover
  • CompellingA masterly featA magnificent, sweeping, authoritative, warm yet wry history The Wall Street JournalIn this fascinating and intimate portrait of the Stuarts, author Allan Massie takes us deep into one of history s bloodiest and most tumultuous reigns Exploring the family s lineage from the first Stuart king to the last, The Royal Stuarts is a panoramic CompellingA masterly featA magnificent, sweeping, authoritative, warm yet wry history The Wall Street JournalIn this fascinating and intimate portrait of the Stuarts, author Allan Massie takes us deep into one of history s bloodiest and most tumultuous reigns Exploring the family s lineage from the first Stuart king to the last, The Royal Stuarts is a panoramic history of the family that acted as a major player in the Scottish Wars of Independence, the Union of the Crowns, the English Civil War, the Restoration, and .Drawing on the accounts of historians past and present, novels, and plays, this is the complete story of the Stuart family, documenting their path from the salt marshes of Brittany to the thrones of Scotland and England and eventually to exile The Royal Stuarts brings to life figures like Mary, Queens of Scots, Charles I, and Bonnie Prince Charlie, uncovering a family of strong affections and fierce rivalries Told with panache, this is the gripping true story of backstabbing, betrayal, and ambition gone awry.

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    1 thought on “The Royal Stuarts: A History of the Family That Shaped Britain”

    1. There are times when a book truly sucks, and this was one of them. Massie uses mostly fictional sources, and over-glamourizes his subjects, focusing more on racy stories than anything factual. Pity, as this one could have been so much more. I can't honestly recommend this one, as I found myself getting more annoyed the more that I read. There are far better books about the Stuarts out there. Given that the author is a newspaper tabloid journalist, I guess I shouldn't be surprised. Not recommende [...]

    2. This is a hard book for me to rate. It was very informative( I would rate a 5 star for this), not text book but finely tuned history-not a "story". I found it somewhat hard to read in terms of following the family lines-even though I'm familiar with the history(I would rate a 3 or 4 star for this). Took me much longer to read than usual because I followed up with all the footnotes cited in the back of the book. Massie is a good and thorough writer. I do recommend reading the "Envoi" chapter (the [...]

    3. “The Royal Stuarts” by Allan Massie, published by Thomas Dunne Books.Category – English HistoryThis book could very easily been subtitled: “Off with their Heads”, Every King should have several Mistresses”, or “Let’s have another War”.Allan Massie does a masterful job of telling how the Stuarts shaped the history of Great Britain. The reader must be informed though that this is a history book and is really geared to those that have an interest in the history of Great Britain bu [...]

    4. My book blog ---> allthebookblognamesaretakenI keep trying to get beyond James VI/I, but I fear I never will. I picked this one up because I thought maybe if I read about the Stuart family, instead of just Great Britain AFTER James, it might make a difference. Sadly, it does not. James is really the last one who is interesting to me, I think because I kind of feel bad for him because he gets such crap for being 'undignified' for a king - I guess he was allowed to be a tipsy whenever he felt l [...]

    5. "The Royal Stuarts" is a well written (explicitly non-academic) survey of the family which produced a dynasty of kings, and whose blood runs in the veins of the present ruler of Great Britain. (Indeed, when and if the Duke of Cambridge become king, it will course even more vigorously--his mother, Diana, Princess of wales, was a direct descendant of Charles II, unlike his father Prince Charles, who gets his drop of Stuart blood via a daughter of James I.)The Stewarts or Stuarts (Mary Queen of Sco [...]

    6. The Stuarts. Stubborn to the point of losing realms and heads (literally), they made quite the impact on the Scottish and English thrones. Allan Massie always has fun with his subjects and he clearly enjoys writing about this house of royals who originated in Brittany and eventually ruled a united Britain.Family feeling may easily be extinguished when power is the prize.This is a chronological examination of each reigning Stuart personality from Robert II of Scotland to the Young Pretender. The [...]

    7. I found the info on the James' lacking in substance as well - which is pretty much what I was looking for - not particularly interested in the Stuarts after Charles - and Mary, quite frankly, is a pain in the arse. Glad to see I was not the only one who couldn't rate it over two stars.

    8. I enjoyed this. It's easy light reading and fairly interesting. Extremely readable.I don't know much about this period in history yet so I can't say if this was accurate or off. However, the author references Sir Walter Scott often and so I'm guessing not that accurate.None the less an entertaining and light look at the Stuart Monarchs.

    9. This was a very enjoyable read. I particularly appreciated how it lead the reader down the Stuart family tree. I love reading historical biographies and I've read a number about Mary, Queen of Scots, and Charles II and his father, as well as Mary and Anne, the daughters of James II, however, I really knew practically nothing about the early Stuarts nor what happened to the family after James II was kicked out of Britain. It just made all so much more sense to me, than reading individual biograph [...]

    10. Pretty good read that takes you through the royal Stuart/Stewart line without getting too bogged down. Fun for a royal history buff

    11. A fascinating look at where the Stuarts came from, how they came to power, and how that power was eventually lost due to the politics of a state faith.

    12. I actually really only a couple of chapters of this book; the project I am working on required only background on James 1 and Charles 1. I found it to be excellent. Good information, engaging, sympathetic to the personalities involved, and in the Charles 1 chapter, a blessedly succinct account of the English Civil War.

    13. A great explanation of the Stuart history and explanation of the reason and the failings of the Jacobite uprisings.

    14. I'm not a Scottish or royal history buff, by any means; I read this book because I share the same last name as the line of monarchs. That (lack of) background probably affected my enjoyment of the book a bit, as I wasn't familiar with all of the details of Scottish and English history and geography that were assumed. As a result, I read this book with at my elbow as a study guide. Unfortunately, I soon began to realize that the articles were usually about as engaging as and far more informativ [...]

    15. Through this well-written historical account, Masse makes the volatile and intriguing politics of Western Europe, particularly Scotland and England, almost understandable – no small task. Though the genealogy gets a bit confusing at times due to the repetitious use of given names among historical personages, the author provides family trees at the beginning of the book to which the reader can flip back for reference. The book covers the Stuarts from their beginnings in Scotland to their inheri [...]

    16. Eh. Maybe 2.5 stars.I was excited to pick up this book, to read more about monarchs I had only read about tangentially. The format of one monarch per chapter appealed as I felt it would give the author a better chance to focus. I was left without as much information as I wanted. The personal lives of the monarchs were often just skipped over, which made keeping a lot of the people involved straight a difficult task (especially since so many shared names/titles). Massie is also a Mary apologist w [...]

    17. I picked this up because having read enough historical fiction, generally set in England and Scotland (especially Diana Gabaldon's wonderful series), I thought I would try to get more background on what led to the Jacobite rebellion. Plus, I was curious about Mary, Queen of Scots. She gets such mixed press, I wanted to see what a more historical fiction author would say.I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised by the wealth of additional historical material the author incorporated, and I def [...]

    18. An excellent overview of three hundred tumultuous and pivotal years in the history of Scotland and England. Keeping the focus on this extraordinary family and their dramatic, at times tragic, lives, the narrative still gives a good understanding of the politics and nature of the times. The book is well written and thorough, even given its brevity and wide scope.From the rise of the Stuarts in Scotland, to Mary Queen of Scots, to the joining of the crowns, to the Civil War, to the Glorious Revolu [...]

    19. So far the only historical factual book I have listened to. I read this to give me a background sketch while reading the OUTLANDER series. Most definitely interesting however I think that this type of book should be READ as opposed to being listened to as I was always wanting to stop it and consult a family tree and notes, supplied, I am sure, in the written edition.Would definitely read another of this author - but read and not listen to unless I knew more of the subject than I do about the JAM [...]

    20. A history of the Stuart family from the early Middle Ages through Bonnie Prince Charlie's little brother's death in the 18th century. Unlike some heavy, boring "scholarly" tomes, this one is easy to read and understand. For someone who wants an overview of the history, this is perfect. An in-depth study would require several volumes. Here, history is presented in ways even the non-scholar can understand and relate to.

    21. A decent overview the the Stewart dynasty from its earliest beginnings in Scotland to the death of Bonnie Prince Charlie and his brother. I didn't always agree with his readings of character (he has a romantic view of Mary Queen of Scots)and I'm a bit dubious about his citing Macaulay, Scott and Stevenson as sources, but on the other hand he doesn't claim to be writing a scholarly work. And he did pique my interest in reading more Scott.

    22. If you have Scottish ancestors, you really ought to read this well written account of the royal family of Scotland that ended up ruling England, then lost the throne because of their religious belief, mostly. From Mary Queen of Scots to Bonny Prince Charlie, the Stuarts were fascinatingly arrogant, intelligent, good looking and somewhat self destructive. Their history reveals interesting details of this crucial time in English history.

    23. The names and titles were difficult to remember. The genealogy chart included with the book was not sufficient enough to thwart confusion. Portraits of the historical figures depicted would have been exceptionally helpful in separating one James from the dozen or so other Jameses. Otherwise, a thorough historical account, albeit rather dry at times; nevertheless, worth the read for anyone excessively interested in English and Scottish history.

    24. I wasn't sure if this would be as dry as The Tudors, and was pleasantly surprised. The Stuarts were definitely an interesting dynasty! The book is filled with anecdotes that really bring them to life. (I listened to the unabridged audiobook which perhaps made some of the stories, such as Charles Stuart on the run, even more vivid and entertaining.)

    25. Not a bad overview of the Stuart dynasty. Of course, the problem with overviews is that there's always a lot of information that I've seen before, and the interesting parts tend to be too truncated to fit within the scope of the work at hand. Still, it's a good jumping-off place. And now I have a list of individuals whose biographies I want to look for.

    26. Pretty much what the title of the book promotes. Unfortunately, it's one of those history books that seems to assume its readers come prepared with a decent background in the subject being profiled which in this case was not accurate for my British historical knowledge. And I was hoping for more interesting stories than what Massie offered. Had its moments, but too few and too far between.

    27. I really enjoyed this book of royal biographies. It took you through a consise biography of each of the Stuart rulers, and told you both the good and the bad of each one without sugar coating it. If you like biograhpies of the older royal families, or enjoy British history I highly recommend this one.

    28. A competent, easy to read, and well-organized history of the Stuart royal line of Scotland and England. It's not the most electrifying work of history, but it does a fine job recounting the lives of the earliest Stuart kingse ones least known to common knowledge, and deserving of as much fame (or infamy) as their post-Elizabethan descendents.

    29. The book is a bit sketchy on each of the biographies which is not surprising since 384 pages is not a lot of pages to cover so many monarchs. It would have also been helpful if the page headings had specified which "James" (for instance) the chapter was about so that it wouldn't be so easy to get lost among the same-name monarchs.

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